My name is Chris and it has been four months since I last went to the gym. This week is March Break and that means that I don’t have to get the girls up to get to school. That means more flexibility in my own morning schedule. In January 2013 I started going to the gym every morning. I found it easier to make it part of my daily routine instead of going periodically. In spite of that I was not dropping any weight or fat and I had acquired a solid amount of that over the years. Then my boss told me about an app he had used for weight management. It worked well for a while, until I fell off the wagon.
I started using myfitnesspal to track my food intake on a daily basis and immediately started losing weight. Within 5 or 6 months I had dropped 25 lbs. This was in part a result of cutting back on snacking because I didn’t want to have to enter the snacks into my food diary. The bigger impact was the education I received on how many calories were in each food item. That helped me to make better choices about what to eat when I was hungry. No more Starbucks muffins for example. I also made conscious choices about what I would eat in relation to what I planned later in the day. If I expected to have desert or a beer later that evening I would avoid snacks or be more careful about what I ate earlier in the day. I never felt hungry or like I was missing out. If anything I felt like I had control over my weight and body for the first time in my life.
I used the app to track food intake and exercise on a daily basis and weight on a weekly basis. Then I stopped tracking the food because I was doing a good job enacting the lessons I had learned about what to eat. The weight kept dropping and I was doing well going to the gym every day. And then we had a baby.
When our daughter was born in October my schedule and routine fell apart. I still had to get up to get the girls to school in the morning and then all bets were off. Depending on how the previous night had gone I would go home and go back to bed. Most often I worked from home. I worked part-time for two months and during that period of time I felt sleeping for an extra 30-60 minutes was better for me than going to the gym. I did make it to the gym sporadically and the weight was holding pretty steady.
After a few days of being back to work full-time I started a second part-time job to help pay the bills and help out an organization that I believe in. For the past three months I haven’t been paying much attention to exercise or food intake and over the past several weeks I have been feeling a bit creaky and like I had probably put on some of the weight I previously lost.
Since this week is March Break and I can have more control over my schedule in the morning I decided to get back on track. Good news – today is day one and I made it to the gym. I was able to lift the same weight as the last time I was at the gym so that was reassuring. Of course I have been using kids as barbells for the past five months… On the downside I have gained nine pounds.
So now I am back to tracking food intake and exercise and I am going to push that weight back down. I am going to write a post every Friday to track my progress. That will make me accountable to all of you kind readers. Last time I set an arbitrary goal of losing 15 lbs because I had no idea what was possible or what the right weight is for me. I dropped 25 lbs and still had fat to burn. I stalled out around 207 lbs.
Today I am at 216 and my goal is to get to 200 lbs. by June. Even with the roller coaster that is part of this game, I am confident that I can lose 2 lbs. a week as I did before so long as I stick to tracking my intake every day. I’ll let you know how it goes.